Believer, if you are like me, most of the people with whom you routinely interact don’t truly know you. Yes, these close acquaintances are aware that you don’t drink, smoke, swear, or gossip. They understand you don’t endorse certain candidates or social policies. They know you don’t aspire to great wealth or acclaim.

While it’s right that you live a countercultural life, the most salient elements of your identity are hidden from them. They know who you aren’t and what you are against but have no clue as to who you are and what you are for. And, most importantly, why.

You are so much more than what you oppose or prohibit. In fact, if the only way you are known is by what you dislike or abhor you are not only hiding your identity but also distorting it. After all, you are for a peace that transcends life’s most challenging circumstances. You are for a hope that is grounded in the assurances of not the seen but the unseen. You are for a joy that makes this culture’s most alluring attractions appear as rubbish. You are for a freedom that liberates the soul from every type of bondage.

You are for Jesus Christ. He is your peace. “For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility” (Ephesians 2:14, ESV). He is your hope. “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11, ESV). He is your joy. “These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full” (John 15:11, ESV). He is your freedom. “For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery” (Galatians 5:1, ESV).

You belong to Jesus. “I am my beloved’s and my beloved is mine” (Song of Solomon 6:3, ESV.) You are a treasured possession. “For you are a people holy to the Lord your God. The Lord your God has chosen you to be a people for his treasured possession, out of all the peoples who are on the face of the earth” (Deuteronomy 7:6, ESV). You are His and for one very specific reason. “But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light” (1 Peter 2:9, ESV). You were purchased by Jesus so that you would proclaim His great grace and mercy. You were bought so that you would profess the excellencies of Him who brought you out of darkness and into the light.    

Your identity is intricately interwoven into the Lord’s. When you make yourself known, you make Him known. What does this look like? As an introvert and someone whose track record is anything but enviable, my advice is no more profound than this: be authentic. Tell your story, all of it—the good, the bad, and the ugly. Let others in and show them the real you. And then show them the real Jesus, the One who relentlessly pursued your soul. Show them the Jesus that, despite all the muck in your life, redeemed you and calls you friend.

I recently had the opportunity to do just that with my new friend, Andrew. With the Lord’s guidance, I shared the gospel. I did so within the context of my own struggle with fear. This allowed me to talk about Jesus’s sovereign goodness and how the interplay of these two amazing attributes helps me deal with such anxiousness. The transparency by which I spoke seemed to build a genuine connection between us. It’s upon that foundation that I will continue to show him the glories of my Savior.  

Be more fully known and let others see the majesty of Him who gave His life to save your own.   

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